To ask what cultures you're from and you're attitudes re: body hair?

(200 Posts)
BettyCrockerLover Wed 17-Jul-13 23:25:38

Hey everyone smile

I know this is a personal question, but I was wondering about beauty/body hair issues and if these attitudes are different within different cultures around the world and if so, how

I am from North Africa but I was raised in a lot of places and I think the only places a woman should have hair are on her head and her eyelashes and eyebrows, anything else seems a bit...unhygienic to me.

What about you all?

escape Wed 17-Jul-13 23:28:25

I can't speak personally - but removal of most is the norm with Arab women - HOWEVER, I have no idea about the bikini area with them.
They are getting their faces, arms, stomachs etc waxed/threaded due to their hair being dark, thick and more noticeable .

Alisvolatpropiis Wed 17-Jul-13 23:30:35

Personally I dislike body hair on both men and women. As far as I know this is personal preference.

Bogeyface Wed 17-Jul-13 23:30:46

White british born and bred.

I will shave my legs in summer, shave my pits if I am wearing short sleeves and everything else can grow as it pleases. I have trimmed my bikini line a couple of times but it was such a PITA that I have never bothered since.

I work on the theory that if we weren't meant to have it then we wouldn't have it.

I have a big hairy bush and see no need to remove it.
I shave under my arms though and legs.

iloveweetos Wed 17-Jul-13 23:31:51

Hi I'm Indian. Out culture says we're not supposed to remove hair. But I hate body hair. Have had my underarms, face and bikini lasered. Shave legs and arms. I agree with hygiene issue. I used to feel so gross on period but now it's not so bad.

Darkesteyes Wed 17-Jul-13 23:32:19

OP what is the difference beween the hair on a mans body and the hair on a womans body? Its all hair Why is the womans unhygenic and a mans not?

Offler Wed 17-Jul-13 23:34:39

I'm white British and shave my pits, trim bikini but leave my legs hairy, have never shaved them.

Darkesteyes Wed 17-Jul-13 23:34:41

Wholet im the same as you. Never touched my bush with a razor or wax or hair removal cream etc. But have my underarms and hair waxed.
Because its a social construct not because its dirty because it isnt.

Darkesteyes Wed 17-Jul-13 23:35:35

Sorry that should be underarms and legs waxed.

LastOrdersAtTheBra Wed 17-Jul-13 23:35:41

White British

Shave legs and armpits if I'm wearing something where they will show.

Pluck eyebrows so they don't form natural monobrow.

I really CBA with anything else and resent the norm that hair-free = beautiful (probably largely because it's one I'd find so hard to achieve if I tried).

Betty - what are your attitudes to body hair on men?

steppemum Wed 17-Jul-13 23:35:50

interesting as I was thinking about this today.

I shave legs and arm pits in the summer
It would never occur to me to shave arms etc.

But the interesting one is the ladygarden.
I have never shaved mine. i used to remove the edges when I was younger but found my skin got irritated easily
I am frankly astonished as I have come to realise that these days most women seem to remove ALL their pubic hair
Why? I just can't get my head around it at all

allaflutter Wed 17-Jul-13 23:39:17

it's a feminist issue - generations of women where dictated by men to do it, so now it became ingrained (excuse pun) and women think they can't go out with unshaven legs. Nothing much can be done for now.
Aesthetically I prefer no hair on any gender, though shaven chests on men looks silly imo unless they are toned and tanned - and even then can be a bit yuk, no oil please at least!

BettyCrockerLover Wed 17-Jul-13 23:40:30

Darkesteyes I haven't said there's a difference between my feelings on men and women's body hair!

Actually my feelings are pretty much identical, I think men should have no hair on: armpits, privates, back, shoulders and the rest is up to him....

my personal preference for men is no hair but on head, chest and forearms as it looks more masculine.

allaflutter Wed 17-Jul-13 23:41:35

Offler- but d you go out in slirts with bare legs? and is your hair blonde? I;m curious what reaction you get if any, if your hair is noticeable? maybe it's now seen as more socially acceptable than before? I'm not brave enough to try for myself grin!

Darkesteyes Wed 17-Jul-13 23:42:01

OP You said this

I am from North Africa but I was raised in a lot of places and I think the only places a woman should have hair are on her head and her eyelashes and eyebrows, anything else seems a bit...unhygienic to me.

Darkesteyes Wed 17-Jul-13 23:43:02

You said the only places a WOMAN should have hair are..

Lj8893 Wed 17-Jul-13 23:46:26

White British.

I shave my legs and armpits sporadically. So either when I can be bothered, or when I'm getting them out!
Same with my bikini line really, shave around the edges and trim the rest.

I'm quite obsessed with plucking my eyebrows though and they get done as part of my daily make up routine!

HotCrossPun Wed 17-Jul-13 23:46:32

Shave underarms and legs.

I used to get a Hollywood on my bush as well, but since reading the Feminism boards on MN I've decided to let it grow for a while.

BettyCrockerLover Wed 17-Jul-13 23:46:57

I am a woman and MN is mostly women, nothing about one rule for women another for men!

musicmadness Wed 17-Jul-13 23:53:00

White British (with very dark body hair).

I epilate my arms and legs, shave my armpits and either trim or shave my bush depending on what I feel like doing at the time.

As a general rule I prefer no/minimal body hair on men and women.

cantreachmytoes Wed 17-Jul-13 23:53:37

White, blonde.

I started shaving my lower legs and pita aged 14-15 and then whole legs and trimmed bush by the time I finished school. In my early 20s I started shaving my pubic hair, first a bit, then all. I lived in North Africa for some time and had halawa on my arms to try, but it just broke my hair (too thin) so I ended up with stubbly arms. To get rid of it I started shaving my arms. I didn't stop! In the end I had less hair than my friends who removed it all monthly because I couldn't stand letting it grow back at all, so just shaved every day.

After the birth of DC I suddenly realized that I had no idea what my body really looked like, so I let it all grow back. I started shaving my pits again, but none if the rest.

White skin and blonde hair make it almost invisible. If I get a tab though, the skin is darker but hair lighter so it becomes more obvious. It might make me shave again if I were back in the sun!

lessonsintightropes Wed 17-Jul-13 23:54:19

White British too, I remove excess eyebrow hair, underarms and shave legs to the knee (due to Muslim upbringing, don't bother above as I don't wear anything that shows above it, and DH isn't bothered). Don't do bikini waxing but am not very, erm, endowed and it doesn't show with a regular swim suit.

DH has a beard and has a little bit of chest and back and upper arm hair, along with everything else where it should be hairy.

I really hate the new cultural norm in British society that all women should be hairless apart from our heads. It's not natural and as far as I can tell from my (11 year old!!!!!) niece is driven by some pornified version of what women should look like. But that is a very personal view: if I met a man when single and he didn't like hair in my personal regions from my perspective that's as reasonable cause for dumping as it would be for him that I smoked (i.e. life choices which others aren't positive about, but which really bother some, and don't bother others).

Mum was raised in a Muslim environment and taught me to rid myself of down below hair from an early age. Got very pissed off with itching and ingrown hairs, and am very happy that she chose her way, and I chose mine.

Pawprint Wed 17-Jul-13 23:55:19

White British.

Never waxed but shave armpits, legs and trim bikini area.

BettyCrockerLover Wed 17-Jul-13 23:55:55

After the birth of DC I suddenly realized that I had no idea what my body really looked like

Hi cantreachmytoes, I'm curious - what do you mean by that?

WorraLiberty Wed 17-Jul-13 23:57:13

White British, age 44, Irish parents.

I don't like body hair on men or women

However, I think people should do as they please and it's no-one else's business.

shufflehopstep Thu 18-Jul-13 00:04:40

White British with red hair so have very light coloured fine body hair. I shave underarm hair daily, but everything else is as and when I need to. Legs generally only if I'm going to be using fake tan as they're not very hairy.

White British, pale skin and dark hair, don't remove any of it. Yet to have children run away screaming.

I'd urge you to reconsider the idea that female is unhygienic, it isn't, and it seems like another idea that puts women down. Nobody thinks male body hair is unhygienic.

I'm white british, I shave my pits and lower legs and pluck the odd facial hair.

WafflyVersatile Thu 18-Jul-13 00:18:53

head - leave it
eyebrows - pluck when I remember
other facial angry pluck or thread as and when
arm pits - shave once or twice a week
treasure trail - had it lasered, it's great
fanjita - nothing if I'm single and not going swiming. bikini line if I'm going swimming and bikini line and occasional trim if I'm getting any.
upper legs - shave the backs if I'm going swimming or getting any.
lower legs - leave in winter unless swimming/getting any. in summer shave a couple of times a week as on show.

white british.

I would have full legs, bikini line armpits and facial hair lasered if I could afford it.

cory Thu 18-Jul-13 00:22:30

Swedish. Do shave lower legs and armpits in summer, though I actually a bit dubious about the armpits: have been struggling with an infected cyst thing for well over a year and can't shift it, despite repeated surgery and multiple antiobiotics: doctor reckons it might be due to shaving.

My understanding is that body hair (especially in the genital area) does actually help hygiene in the sense of preventing dirt from entering your body.

SuperiorCat Thu 18-Jul-13 00:23:21

Real cultural mixed bag - born in UK - pale skin and dark hair, but European Muslim and Asian Christian heritage.

Some family members (particularly those in African countries) do the all off below eye lashes, and given the heat I can understand why they might want to, I'm too lazy so only do the bits that show, when they show. So nothing gets removed apart from tache in the winter; and pits and legs below knee in the summer.

White British, brunette, pale skinned. I don't remove any hair, I find the whole concept utterly bizarre. I see body hair as a secondary sexual characteristic (which it is) & find it very erotic. If I see a woman with full underarm hair it.

I am heterosexual though & think the issue of men removing bodily hair utterly repulsive.

The thought of a shaven scrotum & the motivation behind it makes me feel a bit ill.

WafflyVersatile Thu 18-Jul-13 00:25:58

Do you use anti-perspirant deodorant, cory? A friend of mine used to get cysts until she cut out all perfumed products and anit-p.

Maryz Thu 18-Jul-13 00:27:31

Bloody hell shock

You do know hair is a normal part of life? It isn't disgusting/unnatural/from Mars

If dh had a sack/crack wax I would run screaming from the plucked chicken look.

Actually, I'm going to be a bit more base about that.

I cannot imagine really dirty, good fucking wholesome sex with a person who is so concerned about where hair is growing in their body.

I reckon shavers are shit lovers.

BettyCrockerLover Thu 18-Jul-13 00:34:43

But Handful oral sex is infinitely more pleasurable when both parties have removed the hair on their privates.

JazzDalek Thu 18-Jul-13 00:35:26

I am white British with dark hair.

Pluck eyebrows
Shave armpits and lower legs in summer
Trim bush

That's it. Shaved down there one time and the regrowth was HELL. Never again.

Bogeyface Thu 18-Jul-13 00:36:28

But Handful oral sex is infinitely more pleasurable when both parties have removed the hair on their privates.

Is it? On what experience do you base that assertion? And they are genitals, not privates, we are not 7!

Maryz Thu 18-Jul-13 00:38:29

But why is oral more pleasurable?

Who says?

The porn industry, maybe?

BettyCrockerLover Thu 18-Jul-13 00:38:30

On my experience, albeit I have only been intimate with my DH.

olidusUrsus Thu 18-Jul-13 00:45:07

I am white British with dark hair. I shave under my arms and my lower legs occasionally. I rarely trim my pubic hair. I rarely pluck my eyebrows or bleach my upper lip. I do no other body hair maintenance. I prefer men with their hair on, too.

I disagree, I love to bury my face in a full man- crotch, have just asked DH, who says 'Fuck that shit, if you meet a woman with a shaved fanny she is probably not secure in her sexuality'.

He adores a full bush, as has every man I've met.

Jan49 Thu 18-Jul-13 00:47:12

White British.

I shave underarms and trim bikini area. Have never really had visible hair anywhere else (other than head!) so I've never shaved/waxed my legs or arms and now that I'm 50 +, there's even less. I cant remember being taught anything as a child re shaving or not.

I don't like seeing hairy armpits on men or women. It looks dirty somehow, like you haven't washed. I think I'm more sweaty under my arms if there's hair there. I prefer people not to be too hairy.

I disagree, I love to bury my face in a full man- crotch, have just asked DH, who says 'Fuck that shit, if you meet a woman with a shaved fanny she is probably not secure in her sexuality'.

He adores a full bush, as has every man I've met.

I'm Metis but was raised in Bible Belt Protestant America White homeland. My (White) mother was very anti-body hair and would mock me relentlessly if I didn't shave enough for her, I recall being called cactus several times. She was also very big on head hair being coloured and styled fashionable (hates that I've gone natural), pretty much the idea of women needing to look a certain way for men by the forced actions of other women.

I stopped shaving soon after leaving home and let my head hair go natural. Basically, I backlashed so badly against those expectations that I didn't cut my hair for about a decade, only cut it when it got to my thighs and just too much stress even when wearing it up under a cloth cap most of the time. The hairdresser seemed quite amused by it as I lost over half of my hair and still had it to my mid-back blush DP's very English and doesn't shave, only trims his beard when it starts and curl under, and his head hair is now longer than mine (he looks like a very pale ginger Viking), his mum keeps talking about "when" he's going to cut his hair and beard, even ten years on.

Maryz Thu 18-Jul-13 00:51:37

So betty, are you actually saying that oral is better with your dp when he is shaved? Better for you or for him? I really can't see it making enough of a difference that any man would want to shave all over every day.

Same for women.

He actually feels uncomfortable about it, there's something de-humanising about it really.

Bogeyface Thu 18-Jul-13 00:57:16

I wonder if the OP is asking this because she is questioning her cultural and marital expectations....

BettyCrockerLover Thu 18-Jul-13 00:58:41

Mary, When I'm giving him oral sex it is better for me if he has removed all his pubic hair and vice versa.

I shaved my head recently to see what it felt like, it was very interesting, I went from long brunette to bald. People's reactions were wildly varied.

It really gave me an interesting perspective on 'femininity' though.

Maryz Thu 18-Jul-13 01:02:11

But don't you think he looks like a plucked chicken?

Doesn't it look weird and unnatural? Or have you never known any different?

sallysparrow157 Thu 18-Jul-13 01:03:26

White British, shave legs to just above the knee when on show and actually hairy (last shaved them on the weekend, went swimming then out in a dress today, am relatively fair and currently tanned so stubble not that noticeable), shave pits when wearing short sleeves and when I happen to have a razor otherwise, find I sweat less without underarm hair and work 12 hr often quite physical shifts so prefer not to have lots of underarm hair just cause of that. Shave pubes every now and then when I fancy it, go from full on bush (even full on bush for me is relatively contained so can go swimming without spider legs!) to nothing but landing strip depending on what I feel like at that point in time. Don't shave anything else, in fact am quite enjoying watching my arm hairs go completely white from their normal brownish in the sun!

sallysparrow157 Thu 18-Jul-13 01:07:14

Oh, never pluck eyelashes as they are quite fair and sparse anyway and cut my own hair with the kitchen scissors when it gets too split end-y

BettyCrockerLover Thu 18-Jul-13 01:08:19

Maryz nah, I don't think he looks like a plucked chicken grin

I don't think it looks weird and unnatural, perhaps it's because I don't know any different but I think it is aesthetically pleasing and very erotic.

ProcessYellowC Thu 18-Jul-13 01:08:40

Sorry not contributing to the cultural mix here, another white british here, and I shave my pits when they'll be on display (max twice a week) and my legs likewise, or in winter both will start to irritate me after about 2 or 3 weeks so then I get the razor out.

Then there is the very occasional giganta-hair that grows around my nipples (they go from nothing to over a cm long) so the scissors come out for those blush.

I am considering all the other places that I do have hair, and leaving aside the bush/hygiene argument, I don't get how hairy arms/hands/back/tache & beard line/feet/toes (even legs) would be unhygienic?

You know where all the pheromones hide don't you?

Morloth Thu 18-Jul-13 01:29:50

I am Mediterranean/Australian as is DH.

We are both hairy.

I don't know what my sisters do now, but my mother never removed body hair and it wasn't something she ever brought up with us.

I used to shave my legs as a teen but when I got to about 21 I though WTAF? Why? so I stopped doing it.

I trim my armpit hair so it doesn't catch on my workout kits, but that is it. I prefer hairy men as well.

The current fashion for smooth men, creeps me out. I like them big and hairy.

Morloth Thu 18-Jul-13 01:32:14

Oral sex is just fine for both of us, thank you. shock

I'm white European (dutch/Irish) and shave pits, legs and most of my bikini area. I'm not a fan of body hair, o feel cleaner without it.

EBearhug Thu 18-Jul-13 02:34:08

White British. Mostly have shaved armpits.

Shaved my legs twice in my life, but stubble isn't a good feel. I do wax them up to the knee from time to time, but not always. I swim often, and no one's ever leapt screaming from the pool in horror, because I think most people aren't looking at my legs anyway. And if they are judging me, that's their problem. But there is a mildly masochistic pleasure in waxing them, like ripping plasters off when you're a kid.

I do my bikini line from time to time. I like the feel of my skin there (or sin, as I Freudianly typed), and I really like receiving oral when there's no hair or so I vaguely remember from the distant past. I do it when I am in the mood for it, then I'll go months without bothering. There's always some hair there though. I don't want to look prepubescent, and I think the fashion for none at all is a bit questionable in some ways. Though you don't have to bother about matching lines each side, I suppose.

I keep eyebrows mostly in shape, get them threaded 3 or 4 times a year, pluck in between and then I'll not bother for a while.

Like a bit of hair on a man's chest, less keen on hairy shoulders. Not bothered about down below. Clean shaven face or neatly trimmed beard. Don't want to nuzzle up to stubble though.

learnasyougo Thu 18-Jul-13 02:49:19

Dp would be disappointed if I removed body hair. He says it's natural and womanly.

I go swimming and never have they evacuated the pool.

I do love not having to shave or wax, though I never wear short-sleeved tops or dresses because I AM embarrassed. DP says I'm free to shave if I want to, but last time I did my armpits felt HORRIBLE - all clammy and the arm skin sticking to the torso, so the hair really is there for good reason.

I wish I had the courage to wear sleeveless tops. Hair at the armpits seems ok in a swim setting but not when at work or out with friends. Sad, really. Why should it even matter?

garlicagain Thu 18-Jul-13 03:01:25

I've trained myself not to be bothered about my leg & underarm hair! (It is noticeable, not the fair downy stuff some women call leg hair.) I can't say I'm actually proud of it - but I am proud of having gone to the shops in shorts, with unshaven legs and pits, the other day.

It's coming off tomorrow, though. Logic hasn't completely overridden conditioning.

American, pasty white skin and auburn-to-brown hair. I shave my pits because I find them less stinky when I do, and I use clippers to attend to the 'swimsuit line' (the hell is anyone catching me in a bikini). As far as the down below goes, I trim it to about 1/4 inch long as it seems to get less sweaty/manky-feeling under clothes.

Legs? Meh... I've just shaved them tonight, but before that I hadn't for about a week and a half or so, and yes I've been out in public (gasp!) with stubbly legs. I figure anyone who doesn't like 'em doesn't have to look, and DH doesn't mind.

The eyebrows I tweeze and shape because if I didn't they'd grow and grow and I'd end up having them to hold them aside to see. grin

garlicagain Thu 18-Jul-13 03:25:37

You could put them in cute little pigtails. With tiny bows.

differentnameforthis Thu 18-Jul-13 03:36:56

British. Don't remove much hair at all. In summer I do remove more, but I rarely show off legs/pits so I don't bother.

Flatly refuse to remove hair from anywhere else. Daily hygiene means I never feel "gross" while on my period or at any other time.

WinningBread Thu 18-Jul-13 04:49:18

I don't remove any of it.

I see lots of women in my area who don't shave either.

I have never had a comment about it from anyone and I have my legs and pits out in the summer (my arms too shock).

I rarely give it a second thought, though when I'm on a thread like this, I'm always shocked at how much people remove.

That's just me though. British, FWIW.

bornagaindomesticgoddess Thu 18-Jul-13 04:49:53

White British but live in Middle East. Wax entire body including face. The only hair I have is the hair on my head (extensions), eyelashes (again - extensions) and eyebrows.

I think I have lived here too long grin

sleepywombat Thu 18-Jul-13 05:17:08

White British. Shave my armpits if wearing something sleeveless. Occasionally shave my legs up to knees, but not really bothered about legs for some reason - wear skirts most days & don't really notice hair.

I remember one of my friends saying she shaved her arms. I thought that really odd.

Dh doesn't shave anything, just trims his beard occasionally. He would be quite happy if I never shaved.

I did have a boyfriend who wanted me to get bikini area completely waxed. He was into porn though. I didn't do it - have never waxed anything.

ILoveNoodles Thu 18-Jul-13 05:33:10

Black British, family from the Caribbean.
I shave under my arms-less sweaty (been even more sweaty since having my daughter 3 months ago) up to my knees in summer-if legs are on show. Trim bikini line if I'm going swimming or on holiday. .
But I fear this might be because I live in Britain, as back home they don't seem to bother with any of that grin

ILoveNoodles Thu 18-Jul-13 05:35:26

Ooh and my mum only does under her arms in summer, nowhere else, unless swimming/holiday, however her hair on her legs are unnoticeable.

theodorakisses Thu 18-Jul-13 05:55:26

Why are you shocked at how much hair other people remove?
Domesticgoddess, I am in the ME too and have all of those things as well!

iloveweetos Thu 18-Jul-13 06:32:37

LOL I have good daily personal hygiene thank you very much. Ridiculous.

marriedinwhiteagain Thu 18-Jul-13 06:53:46

White European and fair. Shave armpits (weekly ish) and lower legs (fortnightly in summer, not in winter). Hard to form a view as I don't have a lot of body hair - no hair above the knee or on calves or around bikini line. Was never hairy and all the hairs on my arms disappeared when ds was born. I might feel differently if I had more noticeable hair. But I would never wear a sleeveless dress without shaving my armpits.

DD is 15 and a bit hairier than me but much fairer so it isn't noticeable. She just sort of naturally started removing her armpit hair at about 11 - at first using veet with my help because she was nervous of the razor and then just switched to the razor because it's easier. I think she will want to trim her bikini line but even as a teen she doesn't seem to be under the sort of pressure to be hairless that I have read about on here.

ANormalOne Thu 18-Jul-13 06:58:35

White British. I don't remove anything, I don't see the point and I don't give a crap about fitting into tired gender roles. If someone has an issue with me having hairy pits that's their issue.

I don't like men who shave either, it looks completely unnatural and childlike.

There's nothing unhygienic about body hair.

SHarri13 Thu 18-Jul-13 07:11:17

I do legs and armpits in the few weeks that it's hot here. I wish I didn't feel the need to conform by doing so though. I used to shave all of my pubic hair but since reading around the topic stopped as it was unnecessary and frankly being compared to a child made me shudder.
I'm a dark haired, paled skinned welsh/ Irish mix

JollyHolidayGiant Thu 18-Jul-13 07:21:50

I'm Scottish.

I shave my armpits once or twice a week. My legs are done about twice every six months. I trim my pubes usually with a scissors but occasionally use a razor. When I'm pregnant I can't see down there and find it safer to shave than to cut!

BelaLugosisShed Thu 18-Jul-13 08:11:01

I'm dark haired and pale skinned, quite hairy, I sometimes shave my armpits and occasionally legs, I went swimming on Tuesday with fully hairy pits and legs, nobody ran from the pool screaming, I have no idea if the other women had hairy extremities, it wouldn't even occur to me to notice confused
People with zero pubic hair must be incredibly wet and sweaty in this weather too.
I can't imagine anything less attractive than a man with no body hair at all tbh.
Pubic hair also serves a very important purpose, i.e. protection of a mucous membrane, removing it seems like ripping out your eyelashes to me, pointless and potentially damaging.

cory Thu 18-Jul-13 08:11:07

WafflyVersatile Thu 18-Jul-13 00:25:58
"Do you use anti-perspirant deodorant, cory? A friend of mine used to get cysts until she cut out all perfumed products and anit-p."

Thanks, I'll take that on board.

scarletforya Thu 18-Jul-13 08:24:34

I'm white, Irish, over 40 and I shave everything.

sleeplessbunny Thu 18-Jul-13 08:24:45

White british, very pale and red hair
Shave armpits and legs if on show
Otherwise CBA
Shaved my bikini line once and got so many ingrown hairs it was awful. Never again.
Wish I had the guts to just not bother at all really.

freddiefrog Thu 18-Jul-13 08:30:34

White British

Shave legs and armpits, trim my bush so that it's short and not hanging out of pants, etc and have my eyebrows threaded

thebody Thu 18-Jul-13 08:32:18

white British and no body hair here

cannotfuckingbelievethis Thu 18-Jul-13 08:38:26

White, Scottish. Pluck eyebrows, shave armpits and legs. My lady garden alternates between a mad, crazy bush and a thin landing strip depending on how I feel. Mostly shaved at the moment. OH prefers oral sex this way and so do I probably, feels more sensitive somehow.

I have very short hair and (when I used to have money to go out) men would sometimes comment that I would look better if I had it long. They'll usually always have something to say about body weight, hair, clothes etc. But I wear what I like and have the hair on my head (and my ) how I like.

znaika Thu 18-Jul-13 08:39:47

This is so interesting. I'm a slav (blonde) with naturally yellow/tanned skin. I always do my armpits and lowerlegs and have done pubes (all). I don't need a bikini wax to swim because you wouldn't see anything anyway. I actually love the way blonde downy hair looks against lightly tanned skin (thinking of DD's temples) and am looking at the little blonde hairs on my thighs and think it looks rather attractive. Maybe I'll stop doing the lower legs too. I will never stop doing armpits and know plenty of men who shave their pits in the summer to stop smells- it doesn't bother me at all. I love a hairy chest though.

TheCatIsUpTheDuff Thu 18-Jul-13 08:41:10

White British, pale skin and thick, dark hair. Shave legs every day because they itch if I don't, presumably regrowth. Armpits less often, if I'm wearing a sleeveless top or otherwise every 2/3 days if not on show, because they get sore from too much shaving. Bikini line I trim with razor and scissors, but don't take it all off; tried it once and didn't like the way it looked. Pluck eyebrows and wax moustache when they need doing.

I'd look better and feel more confident if I could get rid of all except head, eyebrows/eyelashes and trimmed pubes. I shaved my arms as a teenager but realised that it looked silly because there was a line where my arms met my body and I couldn't sensibly shave all over, so I stopped.

I've had less hairy legs and moustache since being pregnant and more single dark hairs on my chin, but no difference anywhere else.

WorraLiberty Thu 18-Jul-13 09:00:32

I disagree, I love to bury my face in a full man- crotch, have just asked DH, who says 'Fuck that shit, if you meet a woman with a shaved fanny she is probably not secure in her sexuality'.

What a strange, sweeping generalisation to make over a bit of personal hair.

SilverOldie Thu 18-Jul-13 09:03:18

Old, white, English with pale skin and fair/grey hair. Never shaved my legs may trim my bush and pits very occasionally.

Why anyone wants to look prepubescent I don't know.

OnIlkelyMoorBahtat Thu 18-Jul-13 09:05:52

I'm half North African, born & brought up in the UK, visit my North African rellies often. I know when my aunts got married, they did the traditional thing of sugaring off all body hair except what was on their head, their eyebrows & their eyelashes. (and in fact my nan did it for them, as their tradition is that this is the mother's role when their daughters get married). Don't know if they keep to that before or after.
I shave my pits every day, legs to the knee every other day in the summer (but can go for months without shaving them in the winter!), shave the bikini line and trim the rest as and when I can be bothered. I shower every day & don't consider hair to be "unhygenic".

Whothefuckfarted Thu 18-Jul-13 09:13:22

I shave my armpits, legs (all the way up) big toes and line from my belly button to my ladygarden blush and usually make my lady garden a lot smaller and do all round my flaps etc and in between my butt cheeks too.

I do this because I feel it's ladylike to be as hairless as possible. It's a pressure from society and it's expectations. Does my head in.

I'm white British with dark hair.

For the record it's NOT unhygienic to grow hair anywhere! Saying that is really ignorant. Idiot.

crescentmoon Thu 18-Jul-13 09:13:44

in my religion there is a religious prescription for both men and women to remove armpit hair and pubic hair every 40 days. iv done it since my mid teens for those reasons - using depilatory cream - plus the usual leg sugaring/waxing, upperlip hair removal etc.

DonDrapersAltrEgoBigglesDraper Thu 18-Jul-13 09:14:05

oral sex is infinitely more pleasurable when both parties have removed the hair on their privates.

How can you even say this, OP?

Given your abhorrence of body hair, I can't imagine you've ever even had oral sex with a full or partial bush. So what exactly are you basing your comparison on?

How can you say it is 'infinitely' better? confused hmm

I mean, it's just not. It's not 'infinitely' better. That is hyperbole in the extreme. And to say that it is sounds like you're trying to convince yourself of something.

Besides... Exactly how hirsute are you?! Are you telling us you grow hair on your clitoris?! Or is your DH a bit, um, confused about exactly what he's meant to be doing down there?!

I am Antipodean and keep things neat down there. When I can be bothered. Other than that, I pluck my brown, shave under my arms and my legs. I am not particularly hairy, so it's not a big thing for me.

White British here too.

I shave legs, under arms, arms, all bikini area, eye brows threaded.

Dh shaves underarms, chest, and pubic area too

I really cant stand hair on bodies male or female. Yuk!!

Whothefuckfarted Thu 18-Jul-13 09:23:54

I think men who shave everything off downstairs do it because it makes them look BIGGER grin

gordyslovesheep Thu 18-Jul-13 09:30:43

totally agree with dondrapers post

I also don't see hair as unhygienic - it's part of our physiological make up and serves a purpose

I am UK born and I have very dark hair - I shave my legs and underarms and I trim my bikini line - My arms are hairy but so what.

I suspect I have more experience of oral sex and have never found pubic hair a problem - is it your DH how has told you it is?

WallaceWindsock Thu 18-Jul-13 09:34:01

Threads like this often come up on here and I think fail to take into account age. I am early twenties. I have grown up with it being seen as the norm to take off as much body hair as possible. I can remember on the school bus when I was in year nine - all th younger ones sat upstairs and downstairs was where all the popular kids sat. One day one of those popular boys came upstairs. Looking back I think it was probably a way to intimidate us younger ones. Anyway he was loudly talking to a friend who was sat on the stairs of the bus about a "gash" he'd "fucked". He was talking about how disgusting it was when he went down there and she had a "massive fuck off bush". I can remember filing that away as something that was so disgusting that boys would talk about it on the bus.

In PE changing rooms the other girls massively took the piss if you had unshaven legs, any pubes visible, or granny pants on. They used to bring veet and wax in with them to lend to each other to remove pubes. I do remember though that the very popular, fake tan, smoking, thong wearing girls could get away with announcing they hadn't bothered to shave their legs so were wearing trackies. If I'd said the same I'd have been ripped to shreds.

Going through school amongst this, and it was everyone and not just a small group, I of course shaved. I could tell you the names of the tiny handful of girls in my year who didn't shave their pubes. Most of us wore lacy semi see through knickers on PE day to prove that we weren't "frigid" and that we shaved so it was genuinely known who didn't shave and it was literally a tiny handful. I'm still friends with one of those friends and she is still referred to as "bush girl". Jokes were made about her having to plait it, having to scrape period blood off it , about her fanny being full of dust and cobwebs because who'd want to have sex with that?

I didn't make these jokes obv, I was her friend but its what it was like. I stopped shaving for several short periods over the five years I've been with DP. He doesn't mind the difference although says he does find it harder to see what he's doing when I haven't shaved as he's obv used to it all off. I do feel more comfortable shaving it though. Yes I do notice the area is more sensitive when shaved but I know that I just feel deepy uncomfortable with a lot of hair there and yes that is certainly due to my experience through school. I'm not prepared to force myself to feel uncomfortable however to challenge that attitude. If that makes me weak then fair enough.

Sorry this is so long. It's a perspective that we never get on these threads. It's always those of us that do shave being accused of trying to be prepubescent girls, or having partners who are porn users. Actually DP and I have only ever been with each other and only very recently did we even venture into oral sex and experimenting a bit. My decision to shave is based entirely on my memory of doing whatever I could to avoid becoming the target of widespread bullying throughout secondary school.

shewhowines Thu 18-Jul-13 09:38:22

I've got better things to do with my time so don't do more than the basics- armpits and below knee in summer. Brows all year round.

How do people actually manage to do their lady gardens anyway? How do you get the hairs underneath? Wouldn't you have to do it everyday? I must admit that is one of lifes mysterys that I've never managed to find the answer to.

shewhowines Thu 18-Jul-13 09:42:00

wallace thats sad

Yet more pressure that kids don't need today.

digerd Thu 18-Jul-13 09:44:37

I remember , some years ago, reading about the some women who <very carefully> cut the hair off round the clitoris so it was easy to find and the man didn't get hair on his tongue. The bush always covers it.

I never had hairs on my legs so did not have to shave them, also just a little under arms, which I shave when showing armpits.

I am older now and inherited my DM's ageing 'bald as a coot' pubes. Have just a bit right down below

I also am unsure why giving a man oral sex means your lips touch his hairy pubes? Mine were not anywhere near? hmm

DonDrapersAltrEgoBigglesDraper Thu 18-Jul-13 09:46:47

Wallace, thanks for your post. It's a pretty depressing state of affairs, isn't it?

In fairness, a huge amount of the pressure to de-hair does come from other women.

I am 39 and I also remember the massive amounts of pressure and teasing at high school. Even pre-high school. Not re pubic hair, but definitely with regards to legs and underarms.

I started shaving my legs at 11 through peer pressure. 11...! It is crazy. 11 is still a child.

And so in the years since I was that age, it's only gotten worse and worse. sad

I remember someone posting on one of these threads to say that her midwife friend laughed at women with bushes. Horrible, undermining, insidious stuff.

middleagefrumptynumpty Thu 18-Jul-13 09:48:12

White, British. I shave armpits, wax legs, bikini, upper lip, do eyebrows and I wax my forearms. I started doing this when I lived in a very hot climate and now hate arm hair.

TheFallenNinja Thu 18-Jul-13 09:54:13

White, British

Covered in hair pretty much everywhere. I wished for a hairy chest as an adolescent as I thought it was manly (late 70's), can't remember wishing for a hairy back though - bugger. I find it quite embarrassing. Still, that's the hand I was dealt and DP seems to like it.

As for what anyone else has, I couldn't give a monkeys.

Body hair is only a hygiene problem if it's not washed regularly.

Morloth Thu 18-Jul-13 09:55:22

I am pretty sure the only reason I shaved my legs as a teen was because of peer pressure and it being the 'done' thing.

It is a bastard and yet another way to keep women trying to be something they are not.

Adult human women are not hairless, it is just the way it is. There is nothing inherently bad about hair.

Morloth Thu 18-Jul-13 09:56:26

I like a hairy back Ninja, DH is furry all over.


Squitten Thu 18-Jul-13 09:57:41

White, British

I shave the bits that are "expected" to be hairless in public - legs and under arms, try to keep roving eyebrows tidy. The rest I'm very lazy about and DH doesn't care.

ouryve Thu 18-Jul-13 09:59:22

I'm white British and fine with keeping it tidy, just as I would the hair on my head, but don't get the shame and "unhygienic" attitude to body hair. I shave my pits and legs in summer because my hair is dark and wiry and I don't want to see it poking out. If it was fine and fair, I'd care a lot less. I let it grow in winter though. If I shave my pits in cool weather, my armpits smell more than if I let the hair grow.

And I do tidy up my eyebrows, but only tidy them, rather than pluck or wax them to thin strips then draw them back on, again.

digerd Thu 18-Jul-13 10:00:23

We oldies had all our pubic hairs shaved my the nurse before giving birth as was supposed to be more hygenic. Also remember how irritating it was when it grew back, especially at the bristle stage.< ouchy, ouchy, ouch!>

MrsDeVere Thu 18-Jul-13 10:04:46

White British and I have a fairly relaxed attitude to body hair.
But I am very fair and have never had to worry about it much.

I think age makes a difference too. I am 46. Hairy legs and armpits were seen as a no no but I didn't know what a bikini line was until fairly recently! I remember seeing the ad appear on the underground for depilatory creams going on about bikini lines and being really puzzled grin

Now I hear my nieces discussing how they are going to fit a wax in before they go into labour shock

That seems utterly bizarre to me. All those years of women being forced to be shaved before birth, we finally get some control back and now women are doing it to themselves.

I reckon DIY pre birth enemas will be the next Big Thing

specialsubject Thu 18-Jul-13 10:05:37

legs shaved to the knee, armpits shaved. That's because I (that is I) prefer it that way. Eyebrows tidied when I remember.

everything else as evolution intended - arm hair is fine and fades if you go outside sometimes. Upper leg hair is also not noticeable.

adult women have pubic hair. Also gives a better shape under a swimsuit, not that it matters.

MrsDeVere Thu 18-Jul-13 10:05:51

X post digerd smile

Latara Thu 18-Jul-13 10:10:28

I'm white, British, with naturally dark blonde hair.

I shave the hair on my legs and bikini line every 2 days when stubble starts to show; and shave my armpits daily.

I trim down below as well but I don't believe in complete hair removal there; my Mum and sister do and shave most of it off as well as bikini line.

I don't have arm hair.
I pluck my eyebrows.

I don't mind body hair on men though. Just not keen on facial hair on men!

ICBINEG Thu 18-Jul-13 10:19:10

White british and I fucking hate the cultural meme that says looking prepubescent is more attractive than looking like an actual adult woman.

Kids don't have hair on legs, armpits and genital areas. Adult women do. Remind me again which of these men are supposed to be sexually attracted to?

I think society is very sick indeed to pressure woman to look other than their natural adult state.

piprabbit Thu 18-Jul-13 10:28:10

White British (with olive skin and dark hair) and I shave my arm pits when they are going to be visible. I shape my eyebrows and deal with the few escapees that seem to have appeared as I've got older.

I used to shave my legs but have realised that the hairs aren't as dark and visible as they once were, so I don't bother any more.

And I leave my bush to it's own devices.

theodorakisses Thu 18-Jul-13 11:18:34

The person who said her husband thinks that women who shave are not comfortable with their sexuality may like to consider whether her husband is indeed a mysoginist arse or just a smug idiot. Fuck off to him either way. Why it is that whether someone removes their pubes or not wheels out all the weirdos and creepy smuggos is beyond me. Who actually cares?

SpanielFace Thu 18-Jul-13 11:36:41

Another white British here. Like many others - I shave legs (to just above the knee) and armpits when they're going to be on display, otherwise about once a week. Hair is fine and light brown, and not very obvious. I trim my bush, have had it waxed a few times but hate the itching when it grows back, and have only shaved once (never again - itchy red spots everywhere confused). I occasionally pluck my eyebrows to tidy them up but they're thin anyway, and pluck the odd stray facial hair when I spot them. Hairless male genitals repulse me - we are supposed to have hair! DH doesn't have a lot of chest hair (but I'm not adverse to it on other men), and I like him best with a bit of a beard!

Eraser Thu 18-Jul-13 11:40:14

British Asian. Caked in the stuff.

quoteunquote Thu 18-Jul-13 11:41:30

I grew up in many different cultures, Asia, Americas, Europe.

My attitude is life is far too short to worry about what hair grows where, complete waste of time and energy, if I ever got bored enough to give it any thought, I would worry.

steppemum Thu 18-Jul-13 11:53:47

I think Wallace may be right about age. I freely admit to being old (46)
I went to boarding school and at 11/12 it was kudos to be the one who had started to grow pubes - you were more grown up.

To me, man with a hairy chest is a man, full grown
A man with a shaved chest is a teenage boy.
A man with shaved pubes is like a small boy confused

For me, it really feels like to have sex with someone with no pubic hair would be like having sex with a 12 year old.

I am relieved to see how many women don't shave their pubes. It would never ever occur to me to think no pubes was more sexy. To me no pubes is prepubescent.

That is just how I feel, no offense to anyone who feels totally differently, as wallace said it may be an age thing.

On a practical note, I used to shave my bikini line, I tried razor, wax and cream and it always went sore and red, by the time it was fit to be seen, regrowth had started, and that was stubbly and prickly and uncomfortable. It also regrew with ingrowing hairs etc etc. It was a total nightmare. I can't imagine choosing to do that on my sensitive bits!

WorraLiberty Thu 18-Jul-13 13:14:41

Well said theodorakisses

The judgy-pants and sneering on threads like this, never ceases to amaze me.

It's bloody personal hair, so each to their own.

Owllady Thu 18-Jul-13 13:19:31

white british, shave legs, armptis, have a trim down there if I can bebothered, have eyebrows shaped and lip waxed

shewhowines Thu 18-Jul-13 13:20:03

It is personal hair worra but when our DD's (or DS's) are pressurised by societys expectations to do something something, that like you say "doesn't really matter", it is hard not to judge.

BellEndTent Thu 18-Jul-13 13:27:08

British, remove all public, armpit and leg hair because it feels nicer to me. Pluck my eyebrows, have never waxed my lip or removed hair from my arms though.

BellEndTent Thu 18-Jul-13 13:27:33

The public typo again blush.

Mine is most definitely not public.

livinginwonderland Thu 18-Jul-13 13:27:39

white australian, but raised in britain.

shave legs, underarms and pubic area. i've never waxed anything in my life. i don't care what other people do.

stooshe Thu 18-Jul-13 13:37:14

Black British of Caribbean descent. I've always done my armpits, do my legs if they are going to be exposed/summer. I waxed and shaved my pubes like a bald eagle for one guy ( well he was very good at oral, what's a lady to do?), but now I just trim around the "V" as I can't stop laughing at the sight of my fanjo with no hair on it ( it just looks very strange). None of this is for hygiene's sake, just appearance. My armpits do not smell worse or better , with or without hair. Bathing/showering is what gets me clean and smelling good.

gotthemoononastick Thu 18-Jul-13 13:40:06

Eyes bleeding!why oh why did I open the thread.String of pearls snapped and scattered over floor.Every day is a school day!

stooshe Thu 18-Jul-13 13:40:25

Oh, I shave my top lip and strategically pluck any hair under my chin that doesn't feel youthful and downy anymore. It's a surprise to stroke the chin and feel a crispy man hair growing there. It could be worse. I knew a woman who had one, dark afro hair growing out of her chest. I was always tempted to pull it ( says more about me than her, I know).

garlicagain Thu 18-Jul-13 13:40:48

love the way blonde downy hair looks against lightly tanned skin - Me, too, znaika smile Unfortunately, I only get that when I'm into the second week of a beach holiday, having waxed before going! I'm a grey white-skinned Brit with boisterous, dark, body hair.

Wallace, that is awful shock sad sad

garlicagain Thu 18-Jul-13 13:46:48

I do remove a lot of facial hair these days. The 'man hairs' grow so fast, I've never got them all and sometimes just give up for a week or so. I have vivid memories of being next to older women on the train to work, morning sun beaming, and wondering why on earth they didn't deal with all those pesky face hairs! Now I know, I'm sorry I even thought it.

I'm British and I shave my legs and underarms and keep my bikini line trimmed/Veeted. I do these things more frequently in Summer because I'm more likely to be wearing shorts/skirt or sleeveless tops.

I do it partly because it feels more hygienic, especially in the heat, but also because society tells me that it looks nicer that way. I'm actually a bit hairy at the moment because I have an appointment for waxing this weekend (holiday next week), and I feel a little self-conscious about it, especially my underarms.

I couldn't care what anyone else decides to do with their body hair, although I'd probably be surprised to see a very hairy woman, because it's quite unusual these days.

WorraLiberty Thu 18-Jul-13 13:53:06

It is personal hair worra but when our DD's (or DS's) are pressurised by societys expectations to do something something, that like you say "doesn't really matter", it is hard not to judge.

Then raise your children to be do what they want with their own personal hair...and to not judge others.

Where does the judging end? Tattoos? Piercings?

These are all personal choices

itsonlysubterfuge Thu 18-Jul-13 13:55:44

It doesn't really have anything to do with my culture, but I prefer to have my pubic hair trimmed or shaved and the rest I leave as is. I would shave my legs, but it irritates my skin way too much and I end up with hair-free legs covered in scabs and scratch marks and I do shave my armpits occasionaly.

Offler Thu 18-Jul-13 14:04:26

Replying to allaflutter Wed 17-Jul-13 23:41:35

I do wear skirts and dresses (have a skirt on now!) I'm no longer blonde as I was when a teenager and decided not to shave, but my body hair, with the exception of pubes, is fair and goes virtually invisible in the sun.

They feel smooth to the touch, and as they have never been shaved the hair is incredibly fine (and I've never had any complaints wink )

MadeOfStarDust Thu 18-Jul-13 14:14:11

oh godddddddddddd does NO-ONE else have to pluck round their nipples..... blush blush

Offler Thu 18-Jul-13 14:19:50

Occasionally wink

OnIlkelyMoorBahtat Thu 18-Jul-13 14:23:48

MadeOfStarDust oh god yes, don't worry - I forgot about those, mainly because I rarely bother unless someone is likely to see them.

I also forgot about mustache & ever-expanding chin hair (thanks a lot, peri-menopause angry)

theodorakisses Thu 18-Jul-13 14:45:24

Where exactly are all these places full of shackled teenagers being rocked to wax against their will? Maybe it has been something seen in porn and maybe, entirely unconnectedly, some of just like it better and feel cleaner and nicer. And, if you suggest that any male or female who is in a relationship with a shaved person is a potential paedophile (see commens such as "i feel it is like having sex with a 12 year old" you can a) fuck off and b) examine your own warped values that make you resort to making such vile suggestions to prove your own, warped point. I expect there are some pretty warped men out there who fetish over big sweaty hairy fannies as well, does that make them geriatricophiles or whatever the equivalent is?

theodorakisses Thu 18-Jul-13 14:46:13

Or just plain gross perhaps

vladthedisorganised Thu 18-Jul-13 14:56:24

White British here.

Shave under arms daily and legs every other day; go to the threaders to keep the monobrow under control and halt any emergence of a moustache (but I'm very, very paranoid about that). If I was wearing a particularly high-cut swimsuit I'd get the bikini line waxed, but haven't done either in years.

I feel uneasy about the Hollywood wax: I think in this country it can be part of an increasingly artificial ideal being applied to womens' bodies (implants, Botoxed/lasered face, etc). I don't want to look like Barbie, and I don't really like the idea of anyone else feeling pressured to do the same. It's a completely personal thing but I'd feel uncomfortable doing it

I spent some time in Eastern Europe in the early 1990s and was the only woman who shaved under her arms - I found that quite interesting. Irrationally enough the underarms are the one area I can't quite bring myself to abandon shaving; kind of a hygiene thing too (how do deodorants work on very hairy armpits?)

YummyYummyYum Thu 18-Jul-13 15:07:16

Women shave their underarms where I come from and I do not. I do not shave my pubes because I earned them by going to puberty. Each to their own.

YummyYummyYum Thu 18-Jul-13 15:11:38

I meant I do shave underarms and that's all I do. I shape my eyebrows but my body hair is very fine, so I don't feel I 'have to' shave. I have never had the 'need to shave the pubes, can wear a bikini and you wouldn't see any of them... in fact, they didn't shave me for my C section, there was no need.

vlad of course deodorant works on hairy armpits. How do you think men manage?

Chattymummyhere Thu 18-Jul-13 15:26:40

Hate all body hair..

Been shaving everything since I got pubes.. I remember all the old ladies in my family having very bad hair issues, it scared me they looked strange and scary..

I still find it creepy to see a women with a tash

Twattybollocks Thu 18-Jul-13 15:45:08

White British. Shave pits, lower legs, pluck eyebrows because I have monobrow, upper lip or I have a hideous tash. The lip thing is recent since I had kids, never used to have it. If I'm wearing a swimsuit I shave the edges but otherwise I leave it until its annoying me then trim with scissors.
Personally I find stubbly armpits more off putting than unshaven on a woman.
I don't like hairy backs on men, but other body hair doesn't bother me at all, men or women.

SmellsLikeWeenSpirits Thu 18-Jul-13 16:11:39

I used to wax my muff off but actually I feel more clammy and sticky in that area without it. I've decided I prefer a bit of hair, it's more comfortable for me. Dp couldn't give a flying fig

puds11isNAUGHTYnotNAICE Thu 18-Jul-13 16:16:10

White British, pale skin, ginger.

Always do my armpits, occasionally do my legs, however the hair is so light you can't really see it. Am having my first wax tomorrow although normally veet my vag once a monthish.

Also love the downy blonde hair on people.

On men.....if I like the man, his body hair isn't going to put me off.

vladthedisorganised Thu 18-Jul-13 16:19:28

It is entirely irrational re: the deodorant. I like roll-on which feels a lot nicer for me with smooth underarms - less so with stubble or hair.
As for men.. I seem to share tube carriages with a lot who appear to be strangers to deodorant altogether, but that's another thing..

amessageforyouYoni Thu 18-Jul-13 16:23:12

White Brit, with pale skin and dark hair. Quite hairy.

I pluck my monobrow into respectability grin, get my 'tache waxed monthly, shave my legs and pits (have been doing so since puberty).

I only ever bothered with bikini line hair removal when I was going on holiday. never had a problem with having a hairy bush and DH doesnt care either way. But recently, i have been removing quite a bit more (landing strip styley) and I must say, it feels much nicer during sex and less icky during periods.

I will defend a woman's right to be a hairy mary til the death, though!

borraxohastaelalmanacer Thu 18-Jul-13 16:37:34

I'm really shocked (not in a bad way mind) by the amount of posters who don't bother with hair removal. I'm white British and have always shaved my legs and arm pits (and toes wink), threaded or plucked my eyebrows and had at least a Brazilian bikini wax. From what I can see, my friends are similar and I would be quite surprised to see a hairy arm pit (stubbly legs not so much)
I live in the Middle East now and in my experience, many of the women here are really funny about female body hair - a lady in my office asked me the other day why I didn't wax my (blonde) hairy arms?!
I have to admit I'm not keen on hairy men either - DH trims his pubes and underarm hair and luckily for me doesn't have much hair on his chest.

nkf Thu 18-Jul-13 16:43:48

I don't understand the feelings of disgust. It's body hair, secondary sign of puberty. I can understand wanting to conform but the disgusted reaction seems excessive to me.

SarahStrattonIsBackForJustABit Thu 18-Jul-13 16:44:15

White British, with a Scandinavian background. V fair skin, blonde hair.

I shave my underarms when I can be bothered, have had them, plus my bikini line, and legs waxed in the past, but don't bother any more. I'm comfortable with the way I am, and I don't have to think of anyone else. Plus, I'm quite fond of my lightly fuzzy legs.

Mapal Thu 18-Jul-13 16:57:45

I wouldn't want to be with a guy who wanted full hair removal down below. It's like he wants sex with a child rather than a woman, would creep me right out.
I once had a one night stand with a guy and I had not trimmed or shaved on any way. He raved about how sexy I was!
I like to do my underarms & brows all year. Legs from knee down in warm weather, bikini line if going swimming. That's it, hubby likes me natural as I do him. Hairless guys give me the creeps.

Incidentally re the hygiene thing, if I trim too short down below I always get thrush. I am better not trimming at all. I think it is LESS hygienic to be hairless there, the hair is there for a reason, just wash!!!

alreadytaken Thu 18-Jul-13 17:09:27

YABVU. What people decide to do about hair is their business but to suggest it is "unhygenic" is to try and make other people feel badly about their choices. It also suggests that you are very insecure about your own choice.

Pubic shaving actually originated in ancient Egypt and Greece when prostitutes had to shave as a clear sign of their profession. You'll probably find more doctors telling you it's bad for you than that it's "hygenic".

But if hair removal seems hygenic to you do it logically and shave your head too.

Breezy1985 Thu 18-Jul-13 17:10:18

I'm white British.

I shave legs, pits, toes blush and everything down there, prefer it that way. Wax my eyebrows.

Dilidali Thu 18-Jul-13 17:14:07

I am hairy. Big time. Waxing at a salon is expensive and I never ever mastered waxing, gave up. So the legs and armpits are shaved daily in summer, every other day in winter.
I have my eyebrows threaded and I trim to the skin. I should, really, do something about this bit of moustache, it is not very obvious yet though.
Maybe cultural, maybe because I am very dark with thick black hair, but I really really hate being hairy.
I never quite got the liberating hairy thing, maybe because on me it would truelly be a sight, it is that bad.

Beastofburden Thu 18-Jul-13 17:17:50

Completely fascinating. I was very moved by the poster who talked about being bullied at school.

I wish the OP had asked for age as well as ethnic background because I think we would find people falling into groups based on their age. I am 51, and when I was a teen it was genuinely only the perverted or the professional sex worker who would shave their pubes. And men- I dont think it occured to us that men actually could. Bear in mind we had very few Muslim neighbours so there were no religious factors in this.

TheProsAndConsOfHitchhiking Thu 18-Jul-13 17:21:43

White british, I do not like body hair at all, Shave my legs, underarms, and everything is shaved down below, Every day I may add, eyebrows get waxed.

Methe Thu 18-Jul-13 17:23:56

White British. I shave my lower legs and arm pits and wax my top lip. I used to spend a lot of time getting my brows threaded but gradually over the last year I've let them grow back to the point of being natural and just tweeze the monobrow. I also used to shave my bits untill I realised it was an utter waste of time and that i am an adult female human being and I wanted my body to look like it and if anyone didn't like that they could piss off.

Back in the last century I had a liaison with an American who'd removed all his body hair. It was gross.

KittyVonCatsworth Thu 18-Jul-13 17:24:25

37, white, British.

Shave legs, armpits, bikini line, random nipple hair, pluck eyebrows. Mostly comfort, some aesthetic. Legs, because tights are scratchy with hairs, arms, because smell sweaty, bikini, because I wear a lot of swimwear and, to me, it looks unsightly. One hair on pimple, cos its just plain weird. Eyebrows, because my eyes look nicer. I have on occasion, shaved all my pubes, but I don't like it when it grows back in and DP hates it because its not womanly. It does heighten sensitivity for me though.

Interestingly, DP shaves his pubes, which is great for me giving oral sex. He also shaves his chest, he's a swimmer, and shaves completely if he's competing. That's a bit weird considering he's a dark haired Irishman!

theodorakisses Thu 18-Jul-13 17:34:54

mapal thanks for proving my point. Frankly, a guy who raves about a hairy fanny on a one night stand sounds absolutely gross to me, yuck. Nice of you to basically suggest that about 50 % of the posters oh's on this thread want to have sex with children. You really ought to think before you post sometimes.

burberryqueen Thu 18-Jul-13 17:41:23

white british, occaisionally shave my legs.
the fanny hair is there for hygienic reasons.......would have thought it would be more unhygienic to remove it....

Mapal Thu 18-Jul-13 17:45:19

50%? Looks more like a minority to me. A wierd perverted minority who obviously ALL want to have sex with children which is exactly what I said.

I did think before I posted and said exactly what I wanted to say. You have given me a good chuckle.

mymagaret Thu 18-Jul-13 17:53:31

We are people so rude to each other about this. I think the people bitching about those that do shave are just as insecure as they say the poster is. Surely its a personal choice and what you feel comfortable with. I agree that it is totally generation thing, a lot of older women and men are less keen on personal grooming, but i know all my friends and work colleagues of a similar age see grooming down below just part and parcel of shower routine and couldn't imagine it any other way.

theodorakisses Thu 18-Jul-13 17:56:11

I guess there is thinking and thinking, chuckle away love, my care is not a jot. Still think a one night stand raving about a fanny is gross, a weird perverted member of a yucky minority. Oh, I am chuckling now, thanks for the laugh.

Darkesteyes Thu 18-Jul-13 17:58:21

Im 40 and at high school i was bullied VERY badly for having hairy legs Have an Italian mother who would not let me shave yet wouldnt come up to the school to sort those bitches out.
ive been getting my legs and underarms waxed since i was 18. I tried shaving and epilating 9 years ago. Couldnt get on with either.
An ex of mine used to shave his chest cos the woman he liked before me preferred it that way. Told him i didnt mind.
He let it grow back and i loved it. I find it manly and sexy. He had hair on his back and shoulders too. I liked that too.
You see we had this thing called "sexual chemistry" and a deep attraction for each other.
I have a full bush. Ive never touched it. If i disrobed in front of a man now and he passed a nasty comment or expressed surprise my clothes would go straight back on again. And he would be out the door or i would. I dont want mechanical sex based on an ideal. I want raw passionate "i have to have you now" kind of sex. And i couldnt have that with a man who would judge me for simply being an adult female.

newestbridearound Thu 18-Jul-13 17:59:07

I'm White British, and I shave my legs and underarms, trim my bikini line and pluck my eyebrows. I can't say it bothers me in the slightest what other women choose to do though; their bodies, their choices. I think people should just do what is most comfortable for them.

theodorakisses Thu 18-Jul-13 18:03:51

Most men don't care how their partner chooses to be, it's called love and respect. Obviously a partner who told you how to manage your body is weird. It would be weirder, surely, for aka to ban a woman from grooming herself however the hell she wanted? It should go without saying that passing a nasty commet about ones partners body is not normal or something that happens in healthy relationships.

Absy Thu 18-Jul-13 18:04:47

Surely body hair isn't the only indicator of whether or not you've gone through puberty and that you're not a child? Surely boobs, hips, wrinkles, grey head hair etc. would give you a sense that someone had gone through puberty and was older than 11?

If not, this is the eternal elixir of youth that everyone's being looking for since forever!

cantspel Thu 18-Jul-13 18:05:11

I am not going to tell a bunch of strangers on the web about my or lack of my pubic hair as quite frankly it is no ones business but mine.

But i would ask anyone who thinks being hairless or liking sex better without the hair as equalling liking sex with 12 year olds what around races who are naturally less hairy? Do they all have the bodies of 12 year olds and living in a perpetual state of childhood?

Absy Thu 18-Jul-13 18:07:52

I can pretty much guarantee that if you removed all hair from my nose down (including those charming chin hairs and nipple hairs - as I said to my friend, if my head hair was as luxurious and fast growing as my chin hair, I would be SUPER HAPPY), nobody would mistake me for a 12 year old. Though other people may be different, I don't know your lives.

GoodTouchBadTouch Thu 18-Jul-13 18:09:42

Ive had pretty much everywhere lasered. Its great as I don't have to remember to shave.

I think hair on women is ugly, but Id laugh if my husband got a wax!

Darkesteyes Thu 18-Jul-13 18:12:50

Good Touch @EverydaySexism

SueDoku Thu 18-Jul-13 18:13:10

theo I think that you've got the wrong end of the stick - as far as I can see, no-one has suggested that people's OHs want to have sex with children - only that they themselves would not feel happy with a partner who liked hairless females.

I'm in my 60s, and would agree that this is an age thing - pubes were seen as very 'grown up' when I was young, and the idea of removing them (men or women) would have made us roar with laughter.

You only have to look at the derision heaped on Ruskin for his horror at finding that his young bride had public hair to see that, historically, women (as opposed to children) had body hair. Pornography - and the easier access to it provided by the Internet - has introduced just the opposite view in younger people.

This is sad, as it is yet another way that women are being forced into boxes by the male ideal of femininity - and as this changes over time, women are always running to catch up... hmm

Darkesteyes Thu 18-Jul-13 18:16:46

YY Sue People may have shaved historically because of lice but they also used to don a merkin afterwards (pubic hair wig)

GoodTouchBadTouch Thu 18-Jul-13 18:16:51

Darkesteyes yes its double standards I know. Must just be what we are used to. If a man waxed Id think he must be some sort of pansy or a sportsman. If a woman was all furry Id probably think she was a bit mad.. you just don't see it these days do you?

Darkesteyes Thu 18-Jul-13 18:19:39

the only reason you dont see it is because its a social construct.

BergholtStuttleyJohnson Thu 18-Jul-13 18:31:14

white british. I shave my legs up to my knee but I only grow hair around my ankles! My thighs have some blonde hairs but not many so I don't bother and don't show them off anyway.
I also shave my armpits.
Dh only shaves his face and nothing else.

ReginaPhilangie Thu 18-Jul-13 18:32:53

White, English. Shave pits and legs and the occasional chin hair. I only shave my bikini line if I'm going swimming, otherwise I leave it all be. I hate doing my bikini line it gets so fricking itchy. I only shave because society frowns on women being hairy. I'm not brave enough to tough it out, but if it wasn't frowned upon I'd leave it all be as quite frankly it doesn't bother me and if it's there it's obviously meant to be there. In the winter I can sometimes resemble the Yeti. grin

Only once have gotten rid of all my pubic hair. I Immaced (that's how long ago it was), and it resembled a fricking raw chicken fillet. Urgh. And the regrowth was so itchy it was unbearable, never again. I do think we're supposed to be hairy down below. I think if a man prefers a completely hair free one then...well he's obviously got serious issues. Far to much like a prepubescent girl TBH.

WorraLiberty Thu 18-Jul-13 18:37:54

Why do people keep bringing children into this? It's pretty sick.

Do you view anyone who shaves their legs and armpits as trying to look pre-pubescent too? hmm

I'm a 44 year old woman who has had 3 vaginal births

With or without pubic hair, I am never going to look like a little girl.


YummyYummyYum Thu 18-Jul-13 20:29:25

vlad some people (men and women) seem to have 'an allergy' to deodorant shock

catgirl1976 Thu 18-Jul-13 20:32:03

White british

Personal preference is no body hair, just head, eye brows and lashes

Also prefer me to remove chest hair (and certainly back hair) and trim armpit and pubic hair. Don't mind hairy legs or arms on a man but other body hair removed / trimmed

perplexedpirate Thu 18-Jul-13 20:35:22

White British. I have always shaved my pits, but I suddenly have the urge to grow the hair and dye it a really soft baby blue colour.
Am I having a mid-life crisis? More to the point, would it work?
I think it would look so cute and unusual.

ChimeForChange Thu 18-Jul-13 20:43:27

White British (blonde)

Get my eyebrows threaded because it makes my face look better!

Armpits and legs when on show.

Bikini area when OH says it resembles a forest.

ChimeForChange Thu 18-Jul-13 20:44:14

perplexed you could plait it if it's long enough too

ChimeForChange Thu 18-Jul-13 20:45:31

OH is Muslim - he shaves armpits and pubic hair - I actually much prefer it shaved!

eccentrica Thu 18-Jul-13 21:33:09

Wallace I found your post very moving. I suspect a lot of people have internalized those sort of experiences without consciously remembering them. I think it explains a lot of people fear and revulsion towards body hair, also it's obvious why those who don't remove their pubic hair can sound defensive, given the sort of attitudes you describe.

perplexedpirate Thu 18-Jul-13 21:44:59

Might be a bit short chime. Maybe a French plait? wink
I really fancy it actually. I think it's seeing Amanda Palmer everywhere. If I dyed it it'd look like I'd done it on purpose iykwim, rather than lost the ladyshave.

DonDrapersAltrEgoBigglesDraper Thu 18-Jul-13 21:48:17

Yes, I think Wallace's post flies in the face of all those people who say they 'choose' to do it, freely and willingly.

I mean, yes, of course they do choose to do it and probably do prefer it.

But. That choice does come from a place of huge social pressure. The choice not to de-hair, as in not to de-hair at all, is a massive political statement; one that most women are simply not willing to make.

And if they do, they're seen as weird - 'other' even. Not normal.

I prefer to be relatively hairless. But I for one am fully willing to admit that my preference comes from internalised experiences as eccentrica says, and from social pressure. I just do not have the guts to go to the beach, say, with hairy legs.

Another example. I work in the public sector. grin In policy. Lots and lots of very intelligent women who don't really give too much of a priority to make-up and appearances. I am a feminist and have been for as long as I can think. I embrace the label fully - and yet even I notice things and have to remind myself not to judge. Things like hairy upper lips. No make-up, untended brows.

If I notice these things (no make-up, body hair, etc) as a feminist - things which I 100% fully and utterly support and approve of, even if I don't do them myself - then you can bet your last dollar that other people, non-feminists and anti-feminists notice them and do judge because we've been conditioned, brain-washed, whatever to.

Wallace's post sums this up really, really well.

kali110 Thu 18-Jul-13 22:35:52

White British wax or epilate my legs when can be bothered,and bikini line and bit of trim. Either wax pluck or shave eyebrows so dont get mono brow, and shave armpits when going out.
Shave or epilate arms when i remember. Only once had a Hollywood. Never. Again. Itchy and felt not implying men who like shaven fannies want sex with children, however i feel like shaving it all off is like being childlike, but that is just mine and partners opinion. End of day its everyone's own personal opinion.

SuperiorCat Thu 18-Jul-13 22:59:53

I'm too lazy to cope with the necessary maintenance to remove all my pubic hair, but I seriously do not understand people saying it looks like a child's body.

My body has wrinkles, cellulite, stretchmarks, breasts, rounded hips, episiotomy scar, c-section scar and overhang, even with my short and curlies removed there is no way it looks like a child's body, if anything, it has more in common with the body of a pensioner.

Skinheadmermaid Thu 18-Jul-13 23:34:19

British, of arabic descent. I'm very pale skinned with very dark hair and i'm also hairy as a werewolf.
I'm envious of how little hair removal everyone needs to do! I shave pretty much my entire body from neck downwards, including back, ribs, arms, entire legs etc. i like my skin to look and feel smooth. I pluck my huge monobrow and beard. I also shave my sideburn area. If i didn't i would look like captain hook.
I shave off everything down below. I like to feel smooth down there and i like to see all the -ahem- action.
I also once had quite severe excema down there when i was younger and i had to shave it to apply the cream. When it eventually cleared up the pubic hair in that area grew back white! So i whip it all off.
I do suffer from random patches of excema and psorisis and having smooth skin makes it easier to apply any creams. Shaving doesn't irritate my skin...i use a fresh razor every couple of days and conditioner.
I do all of the above wish i coukd afford laser treatment!
My bf is sikh so isn't meant to touch his hair but he trims his downstairs so its nicer for oral.
Like i said i love having smooth, supersoft skin. Can't stand feeling hair on myself!

thecook Thu 18-Jul-13 23:47:47

White British

Legs and armpits shaven every day. Also pubic hair. Have shaved it off since the early nineties long before it was fashionable.

I attend a gym in West London and never ever see a women with pubic hair in the showers.

I has a boyfriend a while back who asked me to grow it back and just trim it. I refused.

kali110 Fri 19-Jul-13 00:03:56

Honestly though how do you remove hair from your back? For everyone who waxes down there, how do you wax your arse? Seriously?

EBearhug Fri 19-Jul-13 01:20:47

If a man waxed Id think he must be some sort of pansy or a sportsman

This reminds me of a guy I knew some years ago. He was a keen cyclist and shaved his legs.

He only shaved up to the bottom of his cycling shorts, though. So it was a bit like he was wearing hair shorts. Doesn't appear to be a look that's caught on with many others, from what I've noticed, though I guess I only see up to the bottom seam of the shorts. (Erm, I have to admit to have been taking quite a look in the current weather and lots of people in shorts.)

FloweryOwl Fri 19-Jul-13 01:40:15

Half English half Spanish, dark haired.

Get my eyebrows threaded, shave my legs if I have to get them out. Shave my armpits most days because of short sleeve shirts, but don't bother if I'm not doing anything. And when I was younger I used to shave my vagina completely, but now I can never be arsed and DH doesn't give a shit either way so can't see the point. So I trim if im wearing shorts or skirts.

foreverondiet Fri 19-Jul-13 07:15:43

White British. Dark hair.... Have homedics me and have epilated and lasered at home bikini line, upper lip, legs, lower stomach, underarms. Tried everything else on arm pits but so hairy that waxing epilating lead to ingrown hair and shaving had to be done most days. Go to gym a lot so like not to be hairy...

whois Fri 19-Jul-13 08:43:23

White British, dark hair.

Shave legs and arm pits and have a Hollywood wax to take off my pubic hair. Pluck eyebrows.

I'm not bothered about by arm had I'm not religious about my legs, would def shave them if going out with bare legs but I'm not 100% if I forget before netball in the dead if winter or something.

whois Fri 19-Jul-13 08:46:13

Forgot to say, I prefer men to shave or trim their public hair and I don't really like chest or back hair or beards.

I prefer smooth skin.

I don't like bushy public hair on men or woman. Social co strict or whatever, doesn't make my feelings on that any less valid. Not interested in giving oral if DP has a bush going on. I also hate long pubic hair on myself, the way wee gets in it (or blood) is gross.

EstelleGetty Fri 19-Jul-13 09:07:14

White Scottish with very, very dark Irish grandparents. I am a pretty hairy person. I shave my pits and legs and try to keep my bikini line under control but it grows so fast. I have strong brows which i used to pluck to death when i was at school but now i just leave them, except for the occasional tidy because i love them!

A couple of friends of mine suggested we should all let our underarm hair grow unchecked for a month to see how we got on. I had to decline because if i let mine go for a month, i could tie pigtails in it whereas my 2 friends are both very fair. I absolutely don't consider myself unfeminist because of my decision. Feminism is about choice.

I love hairy men. My DH is v dark and hairy. I so much prefer a hairy chest to a smooth one. Good Lord, our DCs (when we have them) are going to be swarthy...

Beastofburden Fri 19-Jul-13 09:15:09

So ladies, being MUCH older than most of you envy I have a DD who is of an age where I ought to talk with her about such things. I had been prepared to discuss armpits and legs and to avoid the subj of slightly hairy backs. I am so not going to discuss anything more. What will you advise your own daughters? Is it worth the hassle? Should she face down any pube-bullies? What extra grooming will this generation come up with, that we all think, OMG how can they be bothered with that?

amessageforyouYoni Fri 19-Jul-13 12:18:17

The thing about shaving your fanjo FOR a man isnt necessarily always the case, anyway. DH doesnt really give two hoots if i rock a full on bush or a Hollywood styley - but it feels nice for ME to have less ahuir down below, all sensitive and tingly and lovely. So there.

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